iPG: Who might become competitors?
M-x doctor: What do you think?
iPG: How big an opportunity is there?
M-x doctor: I'll ask the questions, if you don't mind!
iPG: What do you understand that others don't?
M-x doctor: Can you elaborate on that?
iPG: Why will you succeed?
M-x doctor: I could ask the same thing myself.
iPG: Who would be your next hire?
M-x doctor: I would appreciate it if you would allow me to do the questioning.
iPG: Would you relocate to Silicon Valley?
M-x doctor: Why do you say?
iPG: How much does customer acquisition cost?
M-x doctor: I have asked myself that question many times.
So, the tactic seems to be stay firm, and let him know who's asking the questions.
Can we have our money now?
 I mean this in a particular way: capable of extraordinarily deep insight very, very rapidly. Just not 15 seconds rapid.
You're trying to convince YC to invest in you. Why would anyone want to give money to founders who haven't thought about these questions?
If the questions were better or more relevant would it help you?
what are your feelings on this method of reversal?
The reality is they need to realise they're approaching people with little free time who have to quickly sort the wheat from the chaff, and asking basic, targeted business model questions like these are a fair way of doing so.
These types of questions aren't meant to make any sort of statement about the person's worth; they are there to determine (a) if the person, at this point in time, is investable as an entrepreneur at the most basic level, i.e. do they understand the basics of business, and have they done their homework with respect to their business; and (b) whether the results of that homework suggest a business potentially worth investing in.
A person with positive scores on both these accounts would be able to easily answer these questions in the time allocated. For the remainder, either they don't have a viable business model (fail at (b)), or they aren't familiar with business (fail at (a)), and that's why the site is valuable -- it gives the latter experience validating their business model before the pitch, which may otherwise cost them a missed investment opportunity.
(That being said I didn't like some questions: "Tell us something surprising you have done" or "What's the funniest thing that has happened to you." Have a few beers with me and all kinds of stories will come out, but I don't have a reverse lookup for my experiences -- my mind goes blank when I'm asked questions like these! That being said, it's good to be aware they might be asked, and to at least prepare in some way to respond.)
So the actual rehearsal process would be beneficial? Maybe without a timer?
DO NOT BEAT AROUND THE BUSH. Do not hem and haw. "Uhm"s and "uh"s don't lend an aura of intelligence.
Use precise and concise language. You aren't pitching a VC that will ask you what your "secret sauce" is.
He talks quickly, and so do the other YC partners. Try to match their tempo (as you should when talking to anyone).
Obviously someone with a solid business plan who speaks cautiously is in a much better position than a smooth talker who is selling vaporware. That's the value of the YC group, they have their priorities determined and they don't get taken for a ride.
For must formal presentations the audience expect clear and concise responses. One should be forgiven for "filling" during a public speech or informal chat.
That's stupid advice. Why should I always match my tempo to somebody else?
I'm not going to adapt to your talking speed for the same reason that you're probably not going to try to match mine. I'm not your monkey.
Because it's an important element of building rapport. And rapport is important if you want to get someone on "your side" in a discussion.
for the same reason that you're probably not going to try to match mine
But people usually do just that. It's a fairly well established thing, that people in a conversation usually eventually match each other's talking pace. And it generally feels awkward when you're talking to someone and that doesn't happen.
For those like me who are curious what the RNG missed, here's the data list:
Does it improve your performance? If yes, why and how? What do you do better in the actual pitch?
If not, you should change your logo and website design fast. Possibly your name too.
Our name story is that, our original project name was just "stack" but stack.com was taken. After struggling for a new name, a historic chimney stack local to us caught fire and the newspaper headline was "Stack Blaze".
Also, regardless of whether you did so or not, the logo really does look like a slightly masked copy. Do an image search for "blaze" to see a number of possible treatments on that theme that would not result in such a resemblance.
I am less sure about the name, but the difference is swapping "b" with "st", so I wouldn't be surprised if that would also be considered trademark infringement.
Anyway, it depends how you understand "not a problem"; You might feel morally justified, but I believe that legally you are on pretty shaky grounds. On the other hand, Backblaze would have to kick up a fuss for that to actually matter.
It might be fun to get some other people to fork that and start making it "smarter."
It probably would at least have the distinction of being an answer that pg/YCombinator had never heard before...
Where's the rocket science here?
Verily, this is the hacker equivalent of professionalism.
It is likely you fall into one or more of these.
"We're depending on user aggregation to drive advertising revenues initially, but hope to move to move into white label SaaS as we develop our platform." would be a good 15 second answer.
Is this something you are looking to take further?
Have you done any research or analysis on the effectiveness?
Please fix the misspelling though... "quick, consice [sic] answers"
ie is there any value with this approach?
Would be great if you could replay each of your responses at the end to see if you sounded horrible (or good).
I'd like to see some more pro tips!